Diabetes is bad enough. And there are many well-known symptoms. But, there is one symptom that no one likes to talk about. There is a link between diabetes and diarrhea.
Symptomatic diarrhea happens whether you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes. It a complication of diabetes. Unfortunately, experts are unsure what exactly causes this condition.
One study suggests that neuropathy may be an influence. Neuropathy happens when nerve damage causes numbness and pain, usually in your limbs. High glucose levels can damage nerve fibers.
Alternatively, the sweetener, Sorbitol, may also be the cause. It is present in many diabetic foods. Unfortunately, amounts as little as 10 grams has shown to be a powerful laxative.
On the other hand, it may have to do with your gastrointestinal system. Diarrhea can be caused by your enteric nervous system (ENS). It regulates your gastrointestinal system functions. When your ENS is imbalanced, it can cause diarrhea.
Additional theories include:
- Celiac disease
- Bacterial overgrowth
- Anorectal dysfunction that causes fecal incontinence
- Insufficient pancreatic exocrine
- Not properly breaking down glucose in the small intestine
- Pancreas not working properly
Furthermore, you may also have food triggers like people without diabetes. These triggers can include: dairy, fructose, coffee, too much fiber, and alcohol.
Researchers are hesitant to point at a direct cause. However, their foremost belief is that neuropathy probably triggers this condition.
Your treatment options may vary. It depends on what your doctor suspects is the culprit. You may receive prescriptions for Imodium or Lomotil. This will address the symptoms.
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Additionally, you may be asked to change your diet. Consuming more high-fiber foods may reduce diarrhea recurrence. You may also need to eliminate trigger foods to see if this helps.
If your gastrointestinal tests say that there is a bacteria overgrowth you may receive additional prescription medications.
The link between diabetes and diarrhea is a quiet symptom. The most prevalent thought is that it comes from neuropathy. So, make sure you manage your blood sugar levels carefully. It is the best way to prevent neuropathy.
There is so much information out there about treating your diabetes, but this may just be the news you were waiting for.